Around 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem this year. Low-income countries have an estimated treatment gap of 85% (as compared with high-income countries with a gap of 35% to 50%). While Kenya has a mental illness prevalence rate that is comparable to that of high-income countries, there are still less than 500 healthcare professionals serving the country.
In Kenya, there are growing concerns about mental health among young people, particularly university students that face a challenging and unique conflation of stressors that put them at risk of challenges like depression and substance abuse.
From the use of app-based solutions for screening to electronically delivered therapies, the use of technologies including machine learning and AI will potentially transform the delivery of mental health services in the coming years.
The objective of this challenge is to develop a machine learning model that classifies statements and questions expressed by university students in Kenya when speaking about the mental health challenges they struggle with. The four categories are depression, suicide, alchoholism, and drug abuse.
This solution will be used for a prototype of a mental health chatbot designed specifically for university students. This initiative is a first step in leveraging technology to make mental health services more accessible and more user-friendly for young people in Kenya and around the world.
Basic Needs Basic Rights Kenya (Facebook page):
This challenge is sponsored by Basic Needs Basic Rights (BNBR) Kenya. BNBR supports people with or at increased risk of mental health problems to live and work successfully in their communities by facilitating access to mental health care and social support services.